Crypto News

In the past, many have argued whether or not the XRP token was deflationary or not. In support of the former, pro-XRP crypto analyst Panos Mekras has provided data that suggests that the token has deflationary characteristics. 

Number Of Tokens Burned So Far

In a tweet shared on his X (formerly Twitter) platform, Mekras referenced another tweet showing that over 11 million tokens had been burned. This stat undoubtedly suggests that the token is deflationary since its total supply has decreased over time due to the burn mechanism.

However, another X user (@hasen_van) argued that the token was only deflationary in “respect to all XRP in existence” and that the token will continue to be inflationary as long “as Ripple keeps on selling into the open market.”

true with respect to all XRP in existence, but from a holders point of view – given that mostly all exchanges are using circulating supply (x price) to measure market cap, XRP is inflationary as long as ripple keeps on selling into the open market. #fridayfacts

— VanHasen (@hasen_van) October 6, 2023

In response, Mekras tried to correct the belief that some XRP tokens were not yet “in existence” as he stated that XRP’s total supply of 100 billion has existed since “day 1,” meaning that 100% of its supply has been circulating from the beginning and some XRP tokens cannot be classified as ‘non-existent’ yet. 

This debate seems to stem from the fact that Ripple has an escrow system in place. As such, some (like VanHansen) believe that the XRP in escrow lockups does not fall under its circulating supply and that this escrow system affects XRP’s deflationary status. However, people like Mekras argue that the escrow system doesn’t change the fact that the token is deflationary.

VanHansen further argued that the token cannot be deflationary (except technically) as XRP’s circulating supply gets inflated every time “Ripple releases XRP from the escrow.” Both sides seemed to look at it from different angles, with Mekras abiding by what deflationary meant in the strict sense while VanHansen was trying to provide a context. 

Is XRP Deflationary Or Not?

It is worth mentioning that the XRP Ledger doesn’t exactly have a built-in mechanism to decrease the token’s total supply, unlike some other networks. For instance, Ethereum implemented the London hard fork, which introduced a fee-burning mechanism with some Ether burned immediately after processing a transaction.

Related Reading: When Are AMMs Coming To XRP Ledger? Ripple CTO Gives Clear Answer

However, in XRP’s case, these token burns have occurred coincidentally rather than being a deflationary model on the network. In July, an engineer at Ripple explained that the monumental increase in the burn rate was mostly because of the XRPL account deletions. He mentioned that 2 XRP are usually burned when an account is deleted. 

He further noted that 85,556 old accounts on the Ledger were deleted in June, which led to over 100,000 XRP being burned. Hence, the burned token figure rises every time an account is deleted.